America Recycles Day, November 15, is a national day for community recycling education and encouragement to recycle. It was created in 1997 and is sponsored by the national non-profit Keep America Beautiful. Organizations and individuals can register their event on America Recycles Day website, and receive a discount on the America Recycles Day Toolkit containing banners, fliers, and other materials to market their event.
The sponsoring organization of America Recycles Day, Keep America Beautiful, is a national nonprofit founded in 1953 with the mission of “engaging individuals to take greater responsibility for improving their community’s environment.” With more than 1,200 affiliated organizations across the country, Keep America Beautiful has the support and action of millions of volunteers, all working to make positive and sustainable local change.
Here at Hopkins, the Homewood Recycling Office celebrated America Recycles Day with the debut of JHU Recycle Dude – a morphsuit wearin’, recycling sign reppin’ hero on the hunt to catch students green-handed! That is, in the act of making good waste decisions, such as composting their food scraps, using a reusable bottle or Tupperware, etc. We also gathered photos of students holding signs sporting America Recycles Day captions with JHU Recycle Dude. Students that were caught green-handed by JHU Recycle Dude were also given small prizes, including recycled plastic pencil cases, candy, and high-fives galore! Didn’t see JHU Recycle Dude on campus last week? Ain’t no thang, check out our facebook page to see the America Recycles Day album of fantastic recycling photo-ops!
While JHU Recycle Dude’s debut on campus for America Recycles Day was a success, what would make this effort even more successful is if the student response and excitement for this day wasn’t limited to November 15. Because we shouldn’t be thinking and talking about recycling on only one day of the year, these are behaviors and cultures that should be fostered every single day. How can we do this? It starts with you! Try to think about how you can reduce your consumption, reuse what waste you do produce, and recycle what you can’t reuse.
Let’s make every day America Recycles Day.